6.3/10
456
12 user 4 critic

The Divine Lady (1929)

Not Rated | | Drama, History, Romance | 1929 (Turkey)
The story of the romance between Emma, Lady Hamilton, and British war hero Admiral Horatio Nelson.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (adaptation) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

The road-show troupe of a top Broadway show go cross-country while taking the audience along on the on-stage scenes as well as what happens and is happening back stage of the production. ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Reisner
Stars: Bessie Love, Charles King, Jack Benny
Certificate: Passed Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A pair of sisters from the vaudeville circuit try to make it big time on Broadway, but matters of the heart complicate the attempt.

Director: Harry Beaumont
Stars: Bessie Love, Anita Page, Charles King
Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An all-star revue featuring MGM contract players.

Director: Charles Reisner
Stars: Conrad Nagel, Jack Benny, John Gilbert
7th Heaven (1927)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A street cleaner saves a young woman's life, and the pair slowly fall in love until war intervenes.

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, Albert Gran
The Patsy (1928)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

An awkward teenager hopelessly in love with her elder sister's boyfriend tries to make him notice her.

Director: King Vidor
Stars: Marion Davies, Orville Caldwell, Marie Dressler
Certificate: Passed Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A charming, happy-go-lucky bandit in old Arizona plays cat-and-mouse with the sheriff trying to catch him while he romances a local beauty.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Warner Baxter, Edmund Lowe, Dorothy Burgess
Comedy | Romance | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Two American soldiers are captured by the Germans on the Western Front during World War One and escape a POW camp only to stumble into further life-threatening adventures when they come across an Arabian king's daughter while on the lam.

Director: Lewis Milestone
Stars: William Boyd, Mary Astor, Louis Wolheim
The Red Mill (1927)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A silent version of the Victor Herbert-Henry Blossom operetta

Director: Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle
Stars: Marion Davies, Owen Moore, Louise Fazenda
Coquette (1929)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A flirtatious southern belle is compromised with one of her beaus.

Director: Sam Taylor
Stars: Mary Pickford, Johnny Mack Brown, Matt Moore
Disraeli (1929)
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Prime Minister of Great Britain Benjamin Disraeli outwits the subterfuge of the Russians and chicanery at home in order to secure the purchase of the Suez Canal.

Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: George Arliss, Doris Lloyd, David Torrence
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The queen of mythical Sylvania marries a courtier, who finds his new life unsatisfying.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch
Stars: Maurice Chevalier, Jeanette MacDonald, Lupino Lane
The Divorcee (1930)
Certificate: Passed Romance | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

When a woman discovers that her husband has been unfaithful to her, she decides to respond to his infidelities in kind.

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: Norma Shearer, Robert Montgomery, Chester Morris
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Victor Varconi ...
...
...
Honorable Charles Greville
...
Mrs. Hart
...
Captain Hardy
William Conklin ...
Romney
Dorothy Cumming ...
Queen Maria Carolina
Michael Vavitch ...
King Ferdinand
Evelyn Hall ...
...
Lady Nelson
Edit

Storyline

A partly fictionalized account of history begins with the arrival of slatternly Emma Hart, a cook's daughter, at the home of Charles Greville. Greville takes her as his lover and grooms her until their relationship becomes an inconvenience. Greville then dupes Emma into traveling to Naples to live with his uncle, Lord Hamilton, ambassador to the court at Naples. Realizing that Greville has abandoned her, Emma agrees to marry Lord Hamilton. Soon, however, she meets Admiral Horatio Nelson of the British Navy. Emma plays a crucial role in convincing Naples to open its ports to Nelson during his campaign against Napoleon's French fleet. Soon, Emma and the married Nelson become romantically involved -- a relationship which will have consequences for them both. Written by Shannon Patrick Sullivan <shannon@mun.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1929 (Turkey)  »

Also Known As:

Trafalgar  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1994 UCLA/MOMA restoration)

Sound Mix:

| (musical score and sound effects) (Western Electric Apparatus)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In a separately filmed trailer, Vitaphone production reel #2967, Milton Sills and Corinne Griffith speak about the film. See more »

Goofs

The Vauxhall carnival sequence, set in 1786, contains a Ferris wheel, which wouldn't be invented for another 100 years. See more »

Quotes

Honorable Charles Greville: [about Emma] I am sorry to lose a good cook, but I will not tolerate a brazen hussy.
See more »

Connections

Version of Emma Hamilton (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Rule Britannia
(1740)
Music by Thomas Augustine Arne
Words by James Thomson
In the score often in connection with the British fleet
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
"Me and my true love"
28 May 2011 | by (Ruritania) – See all my reviews

The affair between Admiral Nelson and Lady Hamilton was a phenomenal scandal in its day, and one that was inevitably blamed more upon the lady than the gentleman party. A 1941 picture starring Laurence Olivier and Vivian Leigh, flippantly titled That Hamilton Woman, would portray her as the brazen hussy who later descended into alcoholism. In 1929 however she is The Divine Lady, in a tale of pure love and burning passion. Here we see Lady Hamilton as the tragic heroine trapped by circumstance and loveless marriage, and Nelson remembered not as the philanderer or stately officer but as the bold sea captain with whom a woman could fall perilously in love.

The Divine Lady was directed by Frank Lloyd, a sadly forgotten name, but possibly the foremost filmmaker in Hollywood from the mid-20s to the mid-30s. He gives the movie a gorgeously relaxed pace and conjures up some achingly romantic images, such as Corinne Griffith's hand slipping out of Victor Varconi's as his ship pulls away, or Griffith flicking the flower across her lips in anticipation of Varconi's kiss. Lloyd would often use movement independent from the camera to heighten the emotional impact of a scene, for example Nelson's boat pulling away as the camera, from Hamilton's point of view, remains static. And much of the story is seen from her perspective, something few male directors are bold enough to do. There are a lot of glances cast directly at the camera, putting us in the position of people facing each other. The lovers' tearful farewell however, with Griffith at the harp, sees them both at opposite sides of the room, both facing outwards. We cut between their faces but know they are not looking into each others' eyes, and the sense of separation is palpable.

Corinne Griffith was considered a great beauty and a popular star in the late 1920s. She is not bad here but neither is she exceptional, being rather hammy and childish in her movements. Her whimpering in the first scene is just a little bit Stan Laurel, and in any case she is upstaged by an exuberant Marie Dressler. Griffith is at her best in the slower, more tender moments, showing off such delicate gestures as the little curl of her finger as she kisses Nelson's sword. Opposite her, we have a great opportunity to see Victor Varconi in a positive lead role. With his handsome yet somewhat pointy features he was often cast as a sinister villain, but he had a heroic bearing, and as The Divine Lady proves he can play sensitive as well. He is very much in the mould of a fairytale prince, much better than many of the moustachioed twerps that passed for lead men in the silent era. The Divine Lady is something of a late-silent era character actor bonanza, and as well as the aforementioned Ms Dressler you can also look out for fine appearances by H.B. Warner, Ian Keith and Montagu Love.

For his efforts on this movie, Frank Lloyd was the recipient of the second Academy Award for best director. This has lead to some grumbling among some film scholars both professional and amateur, not because Lloyd won over some supposedly more worthy candidate, but because Lloyd has never been blessed – or even really considered – by the auteur theorists and perhaps, I think, because some people will bash the Academy whatever it decides. But his work, on The Divine Lady in particular, deserves a closer look. This is a movie that has all the searing romantic beauty of Greta Garbo's greatest silent pictures. Corinne Griffith does not have anything like the acting talent or the alluring mystique of Garbo – the effect is all in Mr Lloyd's careful eye, in his captivating images that bring to mind the Emma Hamilton as charmingly painted by George Romney, and sweep us into this tragic love story of a bygone age.


3 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Does anyone have this movie? john-birrer
Upcoming broadcast on TCM. TheStatuette
Surprised not to see comparison between this + 'That Hamilton Woman' dlevy1201
Impressive korevette
Discuss The Divine Lady (1929) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?